There's something special about a purring cat. The rumble is soothing and sweet at the same time, and for those of us with some prissy kitties that don't purr easily, it can be intensely rewarding when the creature you love finally decides to give you a little purr therapy.
So purrs make us happy. But here's a weird little tidbit. They may also have the potential to heal broken bones.
According to research cited by Scientific American, cats purr at a frequency of 25 to 150 Hertz, which is a sound frequency that's been shown to improve bone density. It's also been shown to promote bone healing.
Researchers suspect that cats have this ability to heal with sound because they don't move very much. In theory, their muscles could atrophy and their bones could grow weak. They may purr to keep their tissues healthy while they're taking their 10th nap of the day.
But the researchers say that a cat's purr could, in theory, help people who have broken bones---if the purr is applied close enough to the injury.
Looks like Popoki knew this already.
Cats purr by moving the muscles around the larynx and the diaphragm. Lately, Popoki has been resting her little larynx right on top of that tibia break of mine. She's very gentle, and she follows my safety commands, so I am not worried she will hurt me. And that's a good thing, as she will not be deterred from this activity. She wants to do this, and I can't really stop her.
Is it working? Too soon to tell. In about 3 weeks, I go for followup tests with the doctor, including x-rays. In that appointment, I'll find out if my bones are both knitting together and adhering to all the metal that's been inserted in my leg.
But does it cause harm? I don't think so. It's nice that she tries to help me. She cheers me up. I can tell she wants me to get better. And all that is bound to be good for me.
So purr on, Popoki! Purr on.
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